Brexit-related trade difficulties increasingly hitting UK businesses: BCC – EURACTIV.com

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British businesses have found it increasingly difficult this year to trade with the European Union under the bloc’s Brexit trade deal, according to a survey published on Thursday.

The UK Chambers of Commerce said 45% of businesses surveyed in October found it very or relatively difficult to trade goods with the EU, up from 30% in January when the Trade and Cooperation Agreement (TCA ) came into force.

For UK exporting companies, the figure was 60%.

“These data certainly illustrate that the problems with the TCA are not ‘starting problems’ but rather structural faults which, although repairable, if not taken care of, will cause long-term damage to our sectors. import and export,” said Shevaun Haviland, Director. General of the British Chambers of Commerce.

The proportion of companies reporting difficulties in trading services with the EU also increased, from 14% to 23%.

The survey results are consistent with official data showing UK exporters have struggled to meet international standards since the world’s fifth largest economy left the EU economic system.

As of October, Britain was the only Group of Seven country whose merchandise exports had not recovered to their 2018 average level.

Brexit supporters say Britain will, in the long run, be better able to tap into faster growing markets than when it was in the EU. Many economists are skeptical that this will make up for lost trade with the bloc.

The survey of around 1,000 companies – with a heavy weighting of manufacturers at 41% of respondents – was conducted between October 7 and 31.

(Reporting by Andy Bruce; editing by James Davey)

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